Cardalis for Dogs with Congestive Heart Failure

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced the approval of Cardalis for managing congestive heart failure in dogs. Cardalis contains spironolactone and benazepril in a chewable tablet. Spironolactone is a potassium-sparing diuretic type medication that helps remove excess salt and fluid from the body and prevents potassium levels from getting too low. Benazepril is an ACE Inhibitor type medication that lowers blood pressure by relaxing veins and arteries.Cardalis at VetRxDirect

When used with other medications, Cardalis is approved to manage the symptoms of mild, moderate, or severe congestive heart failure in dogs due to atrioventricular valvular insufficiency (AVVI). AVI is a form of heart disease in dogs that can lead to congestive heart failure.

What is Congestive Heart Failure?

AVVI commonly occurs in older dogs typically over the age of 8 years and smaller breed dogs. When dogs suffer from heart failure, their hearts are unable to pump sufficient blood to the rest of the organs in the dog’s body. In congestive heart failure, blood backs up in organs and causes them to function abnormally, become swollen with fluid, or both. The most common signs of congestive heart failure include, but are not limited to:

  • Persistent coughing
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Reduced energy & stamina
  • Excessive panting
  • Swollen abdomen
  • Restlessness
  • Pale or bluish gums
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss and/or muscle wasting


As with any heart problem, diagnosing congestive heart failure requires a thorough exam from a veterinarian and typically involves multiple tests. Although heart failure is a chronic disease, it can be medically managed with early diagnosis and a veterinarian-guided treatment plan.


It is important to treat heart failure in order to improve heart performance, control arrhythmias, and blood pressure, and improve blood flow. All of these can further damage the heart and blood vessels if not controlled.

Why is Cardalis New?

Human-approved benazepril and spironolactone have been used extra-label to treat AVVI in dogs. With this approval, the FDA has determined the combination of drugs in Cardalis is safe and effective for dogs. Learn more.

What Should I Know about Cardalis?

The safety and effectiveness of Cardalis were demonstrated in a 12-month field study in the United States involving 569 dogs. Cardalis requires a prescription because a veterinarian is needed to diagnose congestive heart failure in dogs due to AVVI, design an appropriate treatment plan, and monitor the safe use of the medication.

Purina Calming Care Targets Dog Anxiety at the Gut

Just like us, dogs experience fear and feelings of anxiousness towards objects or sources and react with certain behaviors to handle them. Separation, loud noises, unfamiliar visitors, environmental changes, and traveling are some of the most common sources. Sometimes we can ease their stress by avoiding certain situations, implementing training or distraction techniques, but some canine anxiety can lead to destructive, negative, or aggressive behaviors. Which means it can not only be frustrating to owners but also potentially harmful for dogs. Treatment of canine anxiety and phobias can be very complicated and is not a quick-fix. Learn more about this condition in dogs and the new Calming Care probiotic supplement by Purina.

Common triggers include:

  • Loud noises from fireworks, thunderstorms, or social gatherings
  • Being home alone
  • Kenneling, traveling or moving
  • New people or pets in the house
  • Changes to the environment or daily routine

If you know what causes your dog to feel fearful, you may plan ahead for these situations. For example holidays. Take time to watch your dog to figure out what triggers them to feel anxious or stressed and what behaviors they express in response. Meanwhile, dogs and cats can also express phobias to certain objects or situations. For example the vacuum cleaner or bathing. Once identified, work with your pet to condition them to the object or situation. Try using training and give positive rewards to modify their behavior. Learn more.

Signs of Fear and Anxiety in Dogs

  • Panting & Trembling
  • Hiding & Avoidance
  • Excessive drooling
  • House Soiling
  • Destructive chewing and digging behaviors
  • Excessive whining or barking

Nevertheless, for some dogs, these methods alone will not be enough to ease or rid them of their anxiety. If you find yourselves in that position, consult with your veterinarian to find out if a supplement will fit your needs.

Purina Calming Care

Calming Care at VetRxDirectPurina Calming Care is a probiotic supplement for dogs that manages anxiety and stress-related behaviors. The Purina Calming Care is designed to help reduce anxious behavior by targeting the gastrointestinal tract. Its unique strain of probiotic manages the balance of bacteria in the gut to influence the brain signals. Calming Care may improve behavioral signs caused by separation anxiety, noise phobias, and other types of anxiety in dogs. It also encourages a positive emotional state and helps maintain heart activity and cortisol response during periods of anxiety. Calming Care not only works to help dogs cope with stressful situations but also supports a healthy immune system. This powdered supplement mixes with food making it easier to give.

Gingerlead Dog Support Harness

Help Dogs with Weak Hind Legs Walk with GingerLead

Sometimes dogs have trouble walking or going up and down stairs because their hind legs are weak.  We carry the GingerLead dog support and rehabilitation harness to help veterinarians and dog owners effectively assist dogs with weak hind legs.

GingerLead Dog Support Harness

Above is a picture of Ginger, the inspiration for GingerLead.  She had surgery to reconstruct her hip at just six months old (triple pelvic osteotomy).  She was sent home with instructions for her owners to support her weight on the hind end and to restrict her activity.  A bath towel was provided, but it didn’t work very well for any of them.  When Ginger had to have another surgery for a luxating patella, a sling and the same instructions were given to her owners.  The sling was better than the towel, but provided little comfort for Ginger or her owners and no control.  Ginger frequently wanted to dart down stairs or chase a squirrel…  Her owners, determined to find a better tool, attached a leash and handle to a soft, padded support sling and the GingerLead was born.

GingerLead’s features include:

  • Easy to Use
  • Soft, Padded Sling Designed for Comfort & to Minimize Bunching
  • Male Slings Available
  • Machine Washable
  • Adjustable for Height of Dog and Owner
  • Attached Handle & Leash Maximizes Control, Safety & Comfort
  • Made in the USA

It is ideal for dogs recovering from orthopedic surgeries (knee, hip or back), dogs suffering from arthritis, degenerative myelopathy, stroke recovery, other debilitating conditions, rear leg amputees, or older dogs needing some help with their mobility.  It is great for taking dogs out to relieve themselves, helping them up and down stairs, or taking them for walks.  It may be used for support or even just some stability for dogs that may lose their balance.

GingerLeads are Available in Wide Ranges of Sizes

GingerLeads are available in various sizes to fit all dogs from toy to giant breeds.

If your dog has trouble going up or down stairs, here’s a video showing how the GingerLead can help:

Does your dog use a GingerLead? Do you have any questions about this dog sling? Please leave us a reply below. Thank you.


How to Treat Separation Anxiety in Dogs

Separation anxiety can not only be frustrating to pet owners, but also dangerous for Dogs. When dogs are anxious and nervous about being separated from owners, they often act out in ways that can cause physical harm to themselves and their surroundings.

Indicators of Canine Separation Anxiety

Some common signs of separation anxiety in dogs include:

  • Excessive drooling
  • Urinating and/or defecating inside the house
  • Barking
  • Floor, door or wall scratching
  • Whining
  • Frequent pacing
  • Engaging in destructive behavior

What Causes Dogs to Develop Separation Anxiety?

Change in Schedule

Similar to humans, dogs are creatures of habit. When that routine and habit cycle is altered, it can cause unease and distress which can lead to the development of separation anxiety.


Moving into a new household is often a prime trigger of separation anxiety due to the unfamiliar surroundings.

Change in Family Dynamics

If your dog comes from a shelter or a previous home, suddenly entering into your family can trigger the development of separation anxiety.

Treatment of Canine Separation Anxiety

While mild cases of separation anxiety can be treated with counterconditioning and positive reinforcement training, severe cases may require medication to effectively treat. Talk to your pet’s veterinarian for the best combination of training and medication for your dog. VetRxDirect offers a wide variety of popular social anxiety medications on sale now at our store.

Adaptil Diffusers

A dog appeasing pheromone spray or mist solution that works to minimize stress related behaviors.

Fluoxetine Capsules

Same generic drug found in Reconcile. Prescribed to treat a wide range of behavioral problems in pets.

*Prescription required

NurtureCALM Collars

A 30-day solution that provides a superior delivery of pheromones for behavior management.

Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs

Congestive heart failure is a silent killer of adult dogs. The condition almost always arises in the aftermath of a damaged or weakened heart muscle. While there is no current cure for canine congestive heart failure, the condition can be managed effectively via treatment so your dog can continue to lead a happy and productive life.

Almost 1 out of every 10 dogs will develop congestive heart failure.

Canine congestive heart failure occurs when the heart is unable to effectively circulate blood with adequate oxygen to supply the entire body. Without proper levels of oxygen, cells and organs cannot function as they normally should, disrupting the body’s internal systems.The scary thing about a weakened heart is it can go undetected in your pet for many months.

Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs – Symptoms:

During the early stages of heart disease, it may be difficult to tell if your pet is sick as many afflicted dogs show no outward signs of being unhealthy. As time passes and the disease starts to advance into the heart failure stage, owners will often see a noticeably deterioration in their pet’s health.

Symptoms of Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs

  • Shortness of Breath
  • Rapid Breathing
  • Decreased Energy and Stamina
  • Decreased Appetite
  • Abdominal Swelling
  • Intermittent Coughing
  • Fainting
  • Excessive Panting
  • Restlessness

Keep in mind these symptoms are nonspecific and can also indicate a whole range of other health problems outside of heart failure, some of which may even be considered normal depending on a dog’s age.

Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs – Treatments:

Thanks to advancements in veterinary science, treating this form of heart disease is now easier and more effective than ever. There are several prescription medications available on the market that work to increase the force and contraction of the heart as well as help to decrease the muscle’s overall workload. Remember to always administer heart medication to your pet exactly as directed by your pet’s veterinarian. Even if you feel your dog is doing better, do not stop giving the medicine without first consulting with your veterinarian.

VetRxDirect offers many of the most popular congestive heart failure medication at great prices.

Salix for Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs

A diuretic used to treat high blood pressure and reduce the workload on the heart and surrounding arteries.

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Vetmedin for Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs

This Chewable tablet helps strengthen the muscular contractions of the heart and dilates blood vessels.

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Benazepril for Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs

Treats heart failure, high blood pressure, and chronic kidney failure. Enalapril is also an ACE inhibitor.

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Spironolactone for Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs

A diuretic prescribed to increase the amount of urine produced and excreted from the body.

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